Healthy Holiday Tip of the Day: Up Your Immunity

It’s never fun to feel sick, but when your plate is piled high with all the extra things on your holiday to-do list, the last thing you need is to allow yourself to get run-down.

Rather than waiting until you actually catch a cold or the flu, why not be proactive with a food-first approach designed to boost your immune system and keep you strong, all holiday long?

Below are my favorite food-based tricks to ensure your body keeps healthy.

And the best part: since they’re all simple ideas based on eating and drinking plant-based remedies from nature, they come with zero side effects!

•Add raw garlic. Powerful antioxidants prove a great form of defense for your body. While some shy away from this tip due to concern with having garlic breath, it’s worth reconsidering which is worse: having to be a bit more mindful when conversing with people for a few days, or facing the consequence of having to be out completely due to being knocked out with a cold bug.

•Reduce fruit just for the time being. Sugar, yes, even that which we get from fruit, provides fuel for those nasty little invaders. Say goodbye to that idea that drinking a glass of OJ in the morning is the way to go. Fresh fruit juice, even local, seasonal organic, is high in sugar, low in fiber and protein and contains little to no fiber, making it a poor choice as a meal replacement option, even if the appetite is decreased due to feeling under the weather, getting more rest and taking time off from normal physical activity. In addition, sugar is a food source for bacteria and virii, making it the last thing we’d want to supply our bodies with when the goal is to rid ourselves of the offending culprits causing the flu or a common cold. Rather than rely on sugary orange juice, better options include green vegetable sources. Did you know that bell peppers, leafy green veggies and broccoli all have higher amounts of vitamin C per serving that orange juice anyway?

•Add herbs and spices- turmeric, oil of oregano and ginger all offer immune boosting benefits as well as help to promote alkalinity in the body.

•Drink  broth- pastured chicken or grass fed bone broth both have amazing healing properties. No time to make your own? Check out Kettle + Fire’s shelf stable option. It’s second best to cooking it yourself!Eat oysters. Hands down, the single best food source of zinc is an oyster, with a single 100 gram serving providing  up to 182mg of zinc! One again, we can see that everything we need is found in nature. Now you have a reason to enjoy Oysters, aside from wanting something decadent or to take advantage of their purported aphrodisiac benefits.    And for those of you moms-to-be, did you know they’re also indicated in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) to help with fertility?

If you believe food truly is medicine, what better time to practice what you preach than busy time of the year?